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Gum Disease Treatment Options

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Gum Disease Treatment Options

If you've been diagnosed with gum disease, there are a variety of treatment options depending on the complexity of your situation and the severity of the problem. We always start with the most conservative & least invasive options, including non-surgical therapies & deep cleanings. In more advanced cases, additional surgical treatment may be necessary.

Non-Surgical Treatment

The first line of defense against the spread of gum disease is a unique type of cleaning called “scaling and root planing.” In this procedure, an ultrasonic cleaning device is used to remove plaque and tartar from your teeth where regular cleaning devices can't reach: under the gum line on the tooth and the root. The goal is to leave a healthy, clean tooth and root surface that makes it easier for the gum tissue to reattach to the tooth.

If gum disease treatment is initiated before it becomes severe, scaling and root planing may be the only treatment you need. However, as with any dental procedure, your home care is essential to maintaining a healthy mouth and ensuring that our treatments are successful. In order to maintain a healthy mouth and resist future occurrences of gum disease, you must brush and floss daily, eat a healthy diet, avoid tobacco use, and have regular dental checkups.

Non-Surgical Perioscopy Therapy

Our office has “leveled up” its non-surgical treatment to provide the most advanced non-surgical treatment available in the world. This therapy, called perioscopy, features a miniature digital camera (endoscope) that is small enough to fit inside the infected pockets around your teeth. This magnifies the infection 100x so that we can diagnose and treat the disease in a comfortable way. This option may be available even in more advanced cases of disease so that surgery could be avoided altogether! Learn more about Perioscopy here.

Surgical Treatment Options

If the tissue or bone surrounding your teeth is too damaged to be repaired with non-surgical treatment, several surgical procedures are available to prevent severe damage and restore a healthy smile. We will recommend the procedure that is best suited to the condition of your teeth and gums. Several of the surgical treatment options include:


  • Laser Periodontal Therapy (LANAP)
    Dr. Setter’s team is specially trained in the Laser-Assister New Attachment Procedure (LANAP). LANAP is the only FDA-cleared laser gum disease treatment that can regrow the tissues and bone lost to gum disease. This treatment involves the use of a miniature laser (about the size of a mechanical pencil lead) to access and decontaminate the deep pockets of infection around the teeth. The infection and inflammation can be thoroughly removed without using incisions or stitches. In addition, patients generally experience minimal post-operative discomfort and a quicker recovery. To learn more about LANAP, visit our treatment page here.

  • Pocket Reduction
    In a healthy mouth, the teeth are firmly surrounded by gum tissue and securely supported by the bones of the jaw. Periodontal disease damages these tissues and bones, leaving open spaces around the teeth that we call pockets. The larger these pockets are, the easier it is for bacteria to collect inside them, leading to more and more damage over time. Eventually the supportive structure degrades to the point that the tooth either falls out or needs to be removed. During pocket reduction procedures (also known as “gum surgery”), we perform surgical access to the gum tissue and remove the bacteria hiding underneath, as well as the hardened plaque and tartar that have collected. We re-shape the tissues around the teeth and stitch the healthy tissue back into place. Now that the tooth and root are free of bacteria, plaque, and tartar, and the pockets have been reduced, the gums can reattach to the teeth.

  • Regeneration
    When the bone and tissue supporting the teeth has been lost due to severe gum disease, we can restore these areas with a regeneration procedure. During this process, we begin by surgically accessing the gum tissue and removing the bacteria, plaque, and tartar. Then, depending on the extent of tissue destruction, we may perform bone regeneration to stimulate new bone growth in conjunction with tissue growth factors to repair the areas that have been destroyed by the disease. The ideal way to treat bone loss and infection is to try and reverse the damage and rebuild the patient’s own tissue.

Learn more about Gum Disease from the American Academy of Periodontology.

To make an appointment, please call our office at 503-222-9961 or e-mail us at  We look forward to the opportunity to meet you!

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